Seasonal Changes in Tenerife

Mon, September 10th, 2012 - By Linda

It’s early September and Tenerife’s Reina Sofia airport, like airports throughout the Canary Islands and mainland Spain, is recovering from the mad dash back to northern Europe as schools are set to reopen across the continent. Within the next couple of weeks children in England, Germany, Holland, Belgium and in Spain and other European countries return to their desks for the first term of the new school year.

You may think that Tenerife remains the same, since we have well over 300 days of sunshine per year in the south of the island and temperatures which rarely drop below 21ºC, but the difference is noticeable both on a touristic and everyday-life level.


Summer tourism is geared up for children. The beaches of Playa de las Americas and Costa Adeje are shrill with the sounds of children from all over Europe, happily splashing in the shallows from June through to early September, and the local beaches are packed with folk escaping the heat each afternoon, but, as schools reopen and temperatures begin to drop, a different type of life emerges from the summer haze.

The south-west, sun-worshippers’ coast from Los Cristianos to Los Gigantes becomes the haunt of “swallows” (as we call those who winter in our warmer climate, just as the birds migrate with the season), and surprisingly the more local beaches are much quieter. There is a definite sense of the change in season, which never fails to surprise me, having lived in the UK for so long. Many locals will now puzzle over why there are people lying out on the beach when it doesn’t seem that hot to them! The smaller beaches will be deserted except for the odd weekend, and surfers and windsurfers breathe a sigh of relief as they become rulers of their domains again, not having to snake their way through tourists as they enjoy their sports.


It will seem strange if you don’t live here, but cafés and restaurants, shops and bars will become busier, although there are less people around. In the resorts this is because of the different kind of tourist. The summer season brings families, who have less to spend than mature couples, and who tend to turn in earlier after a long day in the sun with the kids. In the local places it’s because life is moving back indoors, or at least to terraces with some shelter as the sun sets earlier and the evenings become a tad chilly.

Picnics are giving way to tapas; clouds dramatize the sunsets again; town halls advertise their winter cultural agendas and people begin to plan for next February’s carnival. In Santa Cruz the Auditorium is gearing up for its brief opera season and a full-on program of events for the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra, as well as musicals, ballets and shows.


Yes, it’s most definitely autumn in Tenerife, though as a visitor you may notice only that the days are shorter and the heat more bearable.

Posted : Monday, September 10th, 2012 at 1:59 pm
Category : about tenerife
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